Asian shares were in the red on Friday with little Christmas cheer in thin holiday trade, after the Dow Jones index once again fell short of the 20,000 mark.
Australia's ASX 200 closed 0.14 percent lower at 5,627.90, undisturbed after police said they foiled a terror plot in Melbourne. Meanwhile, the New Zealand benchmark NZX 50 finished down 0.367 percent at 6,876.99. Both markets operated on shortened trading hours for the Christmas holiday.
In South Korea, the Kospi was flat at 2,035.90, but pharmaceutical shares rallied as the country battled its worst-ever case of bird flu. Hanmi Pharma jumped 4.56 percent and Daewoong Pharma rose 1.65 percent after 20 million birds, a quarter of the national poultry stock, were killed to contain the outbreak, Reuters said this week.
Chinese shares were low-spirited: the Shanghai composite was 0.94 percent lower at 3,110 while the Shenzhen composite fell 1.1 percent. Coal producers were laggards, with Datong Coal down 1.75 percent and Shanxi Xishan Coal 3.57 percent lower, tracking losses in coal prices.
Japanese markets were shut for the Emperor's birthday.